RevMedx's sponge-filled syringe, the XSTAT 30, was approved for military use in treating gunshot wounds last year. Now, the FDA says paramedics and other first responders can use the device to treat civilian injuries as well. The syringe is filled with tiny sponges that are designed to control severe bleeding from wounds in places a tourniquet can't be used. Each syringe contains 92 compressed sponges that expand to fill the wound to block blood flow for up to four hours.
While the FDA gave the go-ahead on the XSTAT 30, there are some stipulations. For example, it's only to be used on patients at risk of life-threatening hemorrhagic shock when a hospital is more than a few minutes away. It also can't be used in parts of the chest, abdomen, pelvis or tissue above the collarbone. Once in place, though, the dressing's four-hour window gives paramedics more time to reach an emergency room or trauma center for surgery.